Category Archives: Universe

First evidence of cell membrane molecules in space

All cells on Earth are made of phospholipid membranes. Astronomers have now discovered the component molecules in interstellar space. One of science’s great unanswered questions is the origin of life. One piece of the puzzle is that life began on Earth 4.5 billion years ago, just a few hundred million years after the Solar System […]

The youngest exoplanet found by the Hubble telescope is the size of Jupiter (and still growing)

The Hubble Space Telescope has spotted its youngest exoplanet yet, a massive world 379 light-years from Earth that is still growing. Planets form when dust and gas collide and condense in a circumstellar disk surrounding their star, slowly becoming a “ball.” Far out in the constellation Centaurus, Hubble has spotted a planet still coming together. […]

Dark matter could be made of black holes from the beginning of time

An analysis of space-time ripples shows that the mystery substance is composed of primordial black holes. According to a recent study, dark matter, the mysterious substance that exerts gravitational pull but emits no light, could actually be massive concentrations of ancient black holes produced at the very beginning of the universe. That conclusion comes from […]

Scientists think they’ve detected radio emissions from an alien world

For the first time, scientists may have detected radio waves from a planet orbiting a star beyond our sun. The new study used a radio telescope in the Netherlands to study three different stars believed to host exoplanets. The researchers compared what they saw to Jupiter observations that had been diluted as if seen from […]

Record-breaking ‘black-widow’ pulsar found just 3,000 light-years from Earth

An artist’s impression of a black-widow pulsar tearing material from a companion star. (Image credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center) A fast-spinning pulsar hungrily feeding on a nearby companion star has been discovered 3,000 light-years away in a black-widow binary, a rare type of cannibalistic system. There are currently approximately two dozen black-widow binaries known […]

Parallel Worlds Could Explain Wacky Quantum Physics

The concept of an endless number of parallel worlds coexisting with our own is difficult to grasp, but a variant of this so-called Many Worlds theory could provide an answer to the contentious concept of quantum mechanics and its many alternative interpretations. Bill Poirier, a physics professor at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, offered a […]

Imaginary numbers could be needed to describe reality, new studies find

The researchers used an upgraded version of the Bell test, an experiment that relies on quantum entanglement, to assess how important imaginary numbers were in describing reality. (Image credit: Jurik Peter via Shutterstock) If standard quantum theory holds up, imaginary numbers are critical. Imaginary numbersĀ are necessary to accurately describe reality, two new studies have suggested. […]

Weird quantum objects known as Q balls could explain why we exist

Theoretical “lumps” called Q balls formed in the moments after the Big Bang. One of the most puzzling cosmological mysteries is why the universe contains far more matter than antimatter, and thus why we exist. A group of theoretical physicists claims to have discovered the solution. All they have to do is detect gravitational waves […]

Why the number 137 is one of the greatest mysteries in physics

The fine structure constant has mystified scientists since the 1800s. The number 1/137 might hold the clues to the Grand Unified Theory. The number connects relativity, electromagnetism, and quantum mechanics. Is there a fundamental structure to the Universe that can be seen through special numbers? The brilliant physicist Richard Feynman (1918-1988) famously thought so, saying […]